The official name for the country whose language we study is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In everyday use, however, the word “Britain” is quite possible.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has several different names.
Some people say “Great Britain”, or “Britain” or “United Kingdom”, or just “the U.K.” and “G.B.”
Great Britain is an island that lies off the north west Europe. It is the largest island in Europe. It is 500 km wide and nearly 1000km long.
There is the Atlantic Ocean on the north of it and the North Sea on the east.
The English Channel, which is about 21 miles, separates the U.K. from the continent. Its closest continental neighbors are France and Belgium. Recently the channel Tunnel, which links France and England, has been build.
There are four countries in the United Kingdom: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Scotland is in the north. Edinburg is Scotland’s capital. Wales is in the west. The capital city of Wales is Cardiff. Ireland, which is also an island, lies off the west coast of Great Britain Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic (Eire) are on this island. Belfast is the largest city in Northern Ireland and its capital.
Where does Great Britain lie?
What does the Channel tunnel link?
What countries are neighbors of the UK?
What do you know about Britain?
The climate of the British Isles is influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Winters are not so cold as they can be on the continent, but summers are not so warm as they usually are on the other side of the channel. In other words Great Britain has a mild climate. England is famous for its beautiful lawns with flowers. They stay green all the year round. Many people say that England looks like a large well-kept park.
The animals of the British Isles look like those of north-western Europe: foxes, squirrels, hares, ets. There are 430 kind of birds, many of them are song-birds. The most popular hobby of Englishmen is bird-watching.
People mainly live in cities and towns. The country’s industry is highly developed and output of goods is larger than it needed for home use. Therefore, a great part of the industrial output is exported. The large industrial centres are Birmingham, Glasgow, Manchester, Nottingham, Liverpool.
Britain is only 1 % of the world’s population but is the fifth largest tradition nation. It exports electrical and electronic equipment and chemicals and oil.
What climate does Great Britain have?
Where do people live?
What does the UK export?
The Wild West.
At the beginning of the 17th century the first colonies appeared in America. Many of them were English colonies, for example, New England. But there were also Spanish and German there. African Negroes arrived as slaves in 1619 and began working on plantations situated in the South. They grew rice and tobacco. There were 13 colonies in America in 1733. The English King who lived in England, far away, was the King of New England and the other colonies. The colonists in America didn't like that. They didn't want to depend on the English King or on England. The Americans began to fight for their independence and got it. George Washington became the first president of the United States. In the 18th century some Americans went to the west to look for new lands, and the story of "Wild West" began. In the 19th century people went west to look for gold. They built new settlements and new towns on these lands. Some people were lucky but some were not as they couldn't find any gold. Then they left the towns, so they became empty. Now these "ghost towns" are very popular with tourists. Life in the Wild West was full of danger. The Native Americans in the west didn't like white people who took their land. Sometimes they attacked them. There were bears and other wild animals and people had to have guns. Today many Americans still keep a gun in their houses and all American police officers have guns.
How did African negroes arrive to America?
Why did Americans begin to fight for their independence?
Why did people go to the west in the 19 century?
Fashion from America.
America has created its own type of clothing, which is now popular all over the world. The best invention is jeans, which have become an icon of American culture .
Blue jeans where a by-product of the Gold Rush. The man, who invented jeans Levi Strauss, emigrated from Germany to San Francisco in 1850. Levi was 20years old and he decided to sell clothes to the miners in California. When he was told that durable trousers were the most needed item of clothing, Levi began making jeans of heavy tent canvas. Levi’s jeans were an immediate success. Soon he bought a fabric that was softer then canvas from Nimes a city in France. The miners liked this fabric. They called it “denim”. Strauss dyed the denim blue. Today the company he started is known all over the word.
The next invention is T-shirts. They started off as underwear. During the First World War European soldiers wore them underneath their uniforms to keep warm. American troops copied the idea and started calling them “T-shirts” because of their T shape. In the mid 50s actor James Dean and rock star Elvis Presley shocked the world by wearing their T-shirts on TV. It was too much for young people to ignore. Everyone wanted to look like James Dean and Elvis Presley. Today T-shirts are worn by babies, kids, teenagers, adults.
Who invented jeans?
What colour were the first jeans?
Why do we call T-shirts “T-shirts”?
On April 23, 1564 William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon. His mother was the daughter of a farmer. His father was a glove-maker. William went to a grammar school in Stratford and had quite a good education. There he learned to love reading.
While still a teenager, William married Anne Hathaway, a farmer's daughter some years older than himself. He helped his father in the family business. During these years his three children were born: Susannah, the eldest, then twins — a son, Hamlet, and another girl, Judith.
In 1587 Shakespeare went to work in London, leaving Anne and the children at home.
In London Shakespeare began to act and to write plays and soon became an important member of a well-known acting company. Most of his plays were performed in the new Globe Theatre built on the bank of the River Thames. In 1613 he stopped writing and went to live in Stratford where he died in 1616. He was buried in a fine old church in Stratford.
Four hundred years later his plays are still acted — not only in England but in the whole world. The best known are Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, Julius Caesar, Hamlet, Twelfth Night, All's Well That Ends Well, Othello.
Did he have quite a good education?
When did he go to London?
Where were most of his plays performed?
Jane Austen’s life.
Jane Austen was born in 1775, the seventh of eight children, in the family of a clergyman and spent her short life in Hampshire, near the south coast of England. Her novels describe the everyday life of people in the upper-middle class circle she knew best. Money and social position were very important and the only role of a woman of that class was to find a rich husband.
Her characters spend most of the time in the countryside, doing little or no work. Occasionally they go to London; sometimes they go to Bath, a fashionable town. Her novels may sound boring, but they are a record of what life was like for the upper- middle class in the early nineteenth century and are among the finest and the most entertaining novels written at that time.
When she died, in 1817, only four of her six novels had been published, all anonymously. Now, nearly 200 years later, sales of her novels rival modern bestsellers. Since the age of the cinema and television her novels have become more and more popular. There have been film and television productions of not only Pride and Prejudice, but also Emma, Persuasion, and the Oscar-winning Sense and Sensibility. There are Jane Austen fans in all corners of the globe, and even special Jane Austen discussion groups on the Internet. Her house in Chawton in Hampshire is visited by about 200 people a day.
1)What do her novels describe?
2) What was the only role of a woman of that time?
When did she become really famous?
Born August 30, 1797, in London, England, Mary Shelley came from a rich literary family. She was the daughter of William Godwin, a political theorist, novelist, and publisher and of Mary Wollstonecraft, a writer and early feminist thinker. Her mother died 10 days after her daughter's birth.
In her childhood, Mary Shelley educated herself amongst her father's intellectual circle and he encouraged her youthful literary efforts. There she met Percy Bysshe Shelley in 1812, when she was fifteen. Shelley was married at the time, but the two spent the summer of 1814 traveling together. In the summer of 1816, Percy Shelley and 19-year-old Mary visited the poet Lord Byron at his villa beside Lake Geneva in Switzerland. Stormy weather frequently forced them indoors, where they and Byron's other guests sometimes read from a volume of ghost stories. One evening, Byron challenged his guests to write one themselves. Mary's story became Frankenstein.
Mary and Percy Shelley were married December 30, 1816. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was published in 1818, when Mary was 21, and became a huge success. The first edition of the book had a preface by Percy Shelley. Many, disbelieving that a 19-year-old woman could have written such a horror story, thought that it was his novel.
Where did she come from?
Where did she meet Lord Byron?
When was her book published?
Agatha Christie is known all over the world as the Queen of Crime. She was born in 1890 in Torquay, Devonshire. During her long writing career she wrote over 83 books. Her detective novels are translated into every major language and he is one of the best-selling authors in the world. Many of the novels and short stories have been filmed. The Mousetrap, her famous play, is now the longest-running play in history. Besides being a detective story writer, Agatha Christie wrote several plays as well as six romantic novels and a book of poems (under the name of Mary Westmacott).
She has been writing since the end of the First World War, when she created Hercule Poirot, the Belgian detective with his love of order- the most popular detective in fiction since Sherlock Holmes. Christie became generally recognized in1926, after publishing of her novel The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. It is still considered her masterpiece. When Christie got tired of Hercule Poirot she invented Miss Marple, a deceptively mild old lady with her own method of investigation.
Agatha Christie died in 1976 at the age of eighty-five. Her last book, Curtain, appeared shortly before her death, and her last Miss Marple story, Sleeping Murder, and her autobiography were published after her death. But it is obvious from the number of her books still sold that her famous characters continue to live many years to come.
How many books did she write?
When did she become famous?
What was her last book?
One of the greatest names in the history of man's work in electricity is that of Michael Faraday. He was born in London in 1791 of a poor family, and as a boy he did not learn much. He spent a lot of time playing in the streets during his early life. In 1804 when he was thirteen, he went to work in a bookshop, but the work was not very interesting. So he began to choose the books which liked best. He soon found that his main interest was in science and especially in electricity.
To learn science it is important not only to read, but to make experiments. Like all true scientists. Faraday wanted to make experiments.
At the present time nearly all the electricity that we use is made by great machines which have magnets in them, but in those days no one knew how to do this. And for a long time Faraday also was unable to produce an electric current with his magnet. At last he got a bright idea. He thought of moving the magnet near the wire. And then he got what he wanted: an electric current was produced in the wire!
This was a great moment in the history of man's experiments. But Faraday did not stop at this. He tried different ways of producing the electric current. He got a current when he moved the wire near the magnet.
This was the beginning of all the great machines that make our electricity today. They light our houses., they make our radio and TV sets work, they give the power for our electric trains. It was the beginning of the age of electricity, which has changed the face of the world.
What was F. interested in?
Did scientists know much about electricity at that time?
What did Faraday do?
New Zealand, an independent state and a member of the Commonwealth, is situated south-east of Australia. The country consists of three large islands, called North Island, South Island and Stewart Island, and also many small islands.
New Zealand is a mountainous country. The mountains run from south-west to north-east throughout both the larger islands. The Southern Alps, the highest New Zealand mountains, lie near the west coast of South Island.
The mountains in North Island are not so high and are mostly forest-covered. The central part of North island is a high volcanic plateau. There are many lakes in this part of the island. New Zealand’s rivers are short.
The climate in New Zealand is warm and the greater part of the country is well watered. The north of North Island is subtropical but not too hot. The east and north of both islands have a lot of sunny days, but much rain falls on the west coast.
Most of North Island and the south-west of South Island have good forests of evergreen trees and large areas are rich grass lands.
New Zealand has very few native animals. The kiwi, a bird which lives in the forest and does not fly, is found nowhere else in the world. The kiwi is the national emblem of New Zealand
Where is this country situated?
What is the climate there?
Where can you find good forests?
Stratford-upon-Avon lies at the very heart of England. It attracts people not only by its history and connection with William Shakespeare, but also by its wonderful nature and typical English character. Stratford stands on the river Avon and is one of the oldest market towns.
The houses are small and lot of them are very old. Some of them date back to Shakespeare's time. Here you can visit Shakespeare's birthplace (it is a museum now), Anna Hathaway's cottage (the early home of Shakespeare's wife), the foundations of the New Place, where Shakespeare lived when he retired and died in 1616 (now there is only a wonderful garden on the place of the house). Just round the corner there is Grammar school that Shakespeare used to attend. Here in Stratford there is Holy Trinity Church where William Shakespeare was buries. Thousands of people from all parts of England and foreign visitors come here on Shakespeare's birthday (23rd April) to pay tribute to the great poet. And, of course, you should visit the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, a red-brick building standing on the banks of the Avon. It was opened on 1932 as a living memorial to the poet's work. The Royal Shakespeare Company, which is one of the best known and largest theatre companies in the world, regularly performs here and in the Barbican Centre in London.
Where is this town situated?
When is Shakespeare’s birthday?
Why do people come here?
Education in Great Britain
Education in Britain is compulsory and free for all children between the ages of 5-16. About 93 percent of all children are educated in state schools and the rest attend private schools.
Primary school. Schoolchildren attend a primary school for 6 years (5 to 11 years). When students transfer to Secondary School at the age of 11, they do not take any examination, but their reports are sent on from the Primary School.
Secondary School. Most children - over 80 percent - go to a comprehensive school. "Comprehensive" means all-inclusive. Pupils in all state in schools in England and Wales study 10 main subjects, among them: English, Mathematics, Science, History, Geography, Art, Music, Physical Education, Information Technology. Religious education is also taught. Attainment tests are given at the ages of 7, 11 and 14. At the age of 16 students sit the exams in as many subjects as possible. Weak students may only sit for three or four subjects. Better students take ten subjects. At the age of 16 about two thirds of these pupils leave school and get jobs. About one-third stay on at school until the age of 18, preparing themselves for higher education.
The 6th Form. More ambitious pupils continue to study in the 6th form. They stay on at school for one or two years to prepare themselves for university. They have only three or four main subjects, which are necessary to pass the advanced level exams at the age of 18.
How long do pupils go to a primary school?
What is a comprehensive school?
How many exams do best students take?
Seven per cent of British Schoolchildren go to private schools. There are 3 levels of private schools: primary schools (age four to eight), preparatory schools (age eight to thirteen). At the age of 13 children take an examination. If they pass it, they go to public school, where they usually remain until they are 18. Many preparatory and most public schools are boarding schools; the children live at school during the school terms.
The most famous public schools have a long history and tradition. It is often necessary to put a child's name on a waiting list at birth to be sure he or she gets a place. Children of wealthy or aristocratic families often go to the same public school as their parents and their grandparents. Eton is the best known of these schools.
It is situated in Eton, a town about 20 miles west of London, on the River Thames. The school was founded in 1440 by King Henry 4, and some of the original buildings are still standing. Many famous figures from British public life were educated at Eton. Immediately opposite Eton (across the Thames) is Windsor - a town which is closely associated with Eton.
Traditionally, public schools were always single-sex schools but now many of them are becoming co-educational, both boys and girls attend the school. Eton, however, still remains a public school for boys only.
What children can go to a public school?
What is the best known public school?
When was it founded?
Systems of education in Russia and in the USA
Every citizen of our country has the right of education. This right is guaranteed by the Constitution. It is not only the right but a duty, too. Every boy or girl must get secondary education. They go to school at the age of six or seven and must stay there until they are 14-17 years old. At the school pupils study academic subjects, such as a Russian, Literature, Mathematics, History, Biology, a foreign languages and others.
After finishing 9 forms of a secondary school young people can continue their education in the 10th and 11th form. They can also go to a vocational or technical school, where they study academic subjects and receive a profession. A college gives general knowledge in academic subjects and a profound knowledge in one of several subjects.
Education in our country is free at most schools.
The federal government of USA pays little attention to school education in this country. There is neither a uniform school system in the USA, nor a uniform curriculum. Each state has its own system of schools. But there are some common features in the organization of school education in the country.
Schools in the USA can be divided into state, or public schools, and private schools. State schools are free, and private schools are fee- paying.
Elementary and secondary schools consist of twelve grades.
When do children go to school in Russia?
What subjects do students study in a college?
What school are there in the USA?
In 1453 before Christ the first games were held in Olympia. Beginning with approximately 776 before Christ the games were organized every fourth year. These sports consisted of running, wrestling and other exercises. The favourite games of that time were horse-racing and jumping. The ancient winners got wreaths of palm leaves. The modern Olympic Games began again in 1896. They take place every four years. They cannot take place in a country which is at war, and during the two world wars there were no Olympic Games. So except in 1916, 1940 and 1944, the Olympic Games have been held every leap year. Women's events started in 1912. Winter Olympic Games first took place m 1924. The Games have been held in many countries. The 22nd Olympic Games were held in Moscow in 1980. The international Olympic Committee, which was set up and began to work in 1896, chooses the country and the city for the Olympic Games to be held in. The 26th Olympic Games were held in 1996 in Atlanta in the USA. It was a great sport event. There were competitions on practically all summer sports. Russian sportsmen took an active part in these Games. They won a lot of medals and we are very proud of them. The Games were organized in a proper way. It was a wonderful festival of sport, health, peace and friendship.
What did ancient winners get?
When did women begin to take place in the Olympics?
When did winter Olympics begin?
Olympic Games in London
London was host for the first time in 1908. With 1,500 competitors from 19 nations, the Games were by now an institution of world-wide significance. The programme, moreover, was augmented by the inclusion of Association football (which appeared in 1900 but only in a demonstration match), diving, field hockey, and ice hockey, as well as other sports since discontinued.
The most dramatic episode of these Games was in the marathon, run from Windsor to Shepherd's Bush in London, the site of a new stadium. Pietri (Italy) led into the arena but collapsed and was disqualified for accepting assistance from officials. The gold medal went to the second man home, Hayes (USA), but Queen Alexandra, who was present opposite the finishing line, was so moved by the Italian's plight that she awarded him special gold cup. The 400 metres provided an opportunity for Halswelle (GB) to become the only man in Olympic history to win by a walk-over. The final was declared void after an American had been disqualified for boring. Two other Americans withdrew from re-run final in protest, leaving Halswelle an unopposed passage. Britain won the polo, and all the boxing, lawn tennis, rackets, rowing, and yachting titles as well as five out of six cycle races.
How many nations were on Olympic Games in London?
What was the most dramatic episode?
What did Britain win?
Internet in daily life
More and more people nowadays are interested to be known about all events, in taking some information quickly. With the help of Internet you can make it easily. Back in the 1960th, at the time of cold war, Pentagon asked a question: "How can could orders be issued to the armed forces in the U.S. were ravaged by a nuclear assault?" The communication ways at that time - the telephone, which connected offices, the radio and TV stations - were not only vulnerable to attack, they would also probably the first to go.
In 1964 Paul Baran connected 4 computers in different parts of the USA and posted a message. You couldn't destroy Internet - if some computers will be broken down, the rest will work well. Nobody owns the Internet, and no organization controls its use.
Now millions of people around the world are logging into libraries, call up satellite weather photos, download computer programs and music, take part in discussion groups. The total number of people in Russia , who get into Internet, due the Putin's statistics, is 10 million. In the modern Europe this number is much more - there are more than 200 million Internet users. Internet users are unimpressed by television promise of 500 channel future. The Internet already delivers 100.000 channels for all interests. Now we can connect with Internet mobile phone, photo camera, palm computers and even alarm clock. Now we can be connected with all the world everywhere - in the bus, underground and even on the north pole.
Who posted the first message?
Why do people use Internet?
How many users are there in Europe?
Russian space science
On April 12 every year the Russian people celebrate Cosmonautics Day in commemoration of the first space flight in the world which was made by Russian citizen.
October 4 in 1957 the Soviet Union sends the first sputnik in the world into space. April 12 in 1961 the Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin goes into space and makes one orbit round the Earth in his spaceship Vostok-1. July 21 in 1969 the American astronauts Armstrong and Alidrin land on the Moon. Since Yuri Gagarin's flight, Russian space science and engineering have come a long way. According to space experts in the US and Europe Russian takes the lead in almost all space exploration. Russian has launched more than 2300 space vehicles designed to perform a variety of functions.
Russia is known to carry out many orbital manned flights involving over 80 cosmonauts, many of them having flown several times. It is well known that Russian cosmonauts hold the record for the longest time in space (L. Kizim has worked 375 days) and for continuous stay in space (V. Titov and M. Manarov - 365 days). When the 170 million horse power carrier-rocket called "Energia" was successfully tasted in 1987, Russian has gone far ahead of the United States in the space competition. Russian experts believe "Energia" to be able to take explorers to the Moon or bring back to the Earth satellites that went out of operation. Cosmonauts would live there permanently. And from these structures may be flights to other planets.
What did Gagarin do?
What are Russian cosmonauts famous for?
What do Russian experts believe?
Everywhere, everyday exiting things are happening. Each day is filled with news. How are people kept informed?
The press, radio and television keep people informed on all topical issues of the day. The press has great political influence. You can get a lot of useful information from newspaper reports. If you are a regular reader of the press you will be well informed about all matters. Newspapers publish articles on home and foreign affairs. Reports by political observers and commentators help us to get useful information on international and domestic issues. Most newspapers come out daily. The reader's questions, opinions and suggestions, which they send in letters to the editor, help to improve the newspaper and make it more interesting.
The British are great newspaper readers. Newspapers are often thought of as either "qualities" or "populars". The "qualities" give serious accounts of the news and reports on business matters, industry and culture. They are usually large-sized.
Many newspapers are printed in color, as the part of Sunday or Saturday paper. They provide reading material about clothes, cooking, diet, the house and home.
There is a wide variety of magazines in Britain. They titles show that cater for tastes and interests.
What helps us to be informed?
How often do newspapers come out?
What do “qualities” write about?
The Tretyakov Gallery
The State Tretyakov Gallery is one of the world's greatest museums. The gallery consists entirely of Russian art. In 1856 Pavel Tretyakov, a 24-year-old Moscow merchant bought 2 paintings, the core of a collection that was to develop into a famous public art gallery. Those were the works by Khudyakov "An Accident with the Finnish Smugglers" and by Shilder "Temptation".
By the 1870s the collection already contained over 500 canvases which were kept in a special wing of the Tretyakov house in Lavrushensky Lane. In 1881 the museum was opened to the public. In 1892, 6 years before his death Tretyakov presented his collection to the city of Moscow. It consisted of about 2 000 paintings, drawings and sculptures. The donation included a collection of West European art left by Pavel Tretyakov's younger brother Sergei who had died not long before.
The now existing facade of the museum was built in 1901 :- 1902 according to a design, made by V.M. Vasnetsov. It has got original appearance and to this day remains one of Moscow's most attractive sights. At the beginning of the 1980s work began on the reconstruction of the premises of the gallery hi Lavrushensky Lane. The gallery was finally reopened to the public on the 5th of April 1994 It is one of the five best picture galleries in the world now.
When was the collection started?
When was it opened to the public?
Who made the design of the present building?